Floyd Money Mayweather Now (45-0) Is By Far The Biggest $how In Boxing

Behind the scenes and on the road with Money Mayweather prior to his latest victory over Canelo Alvarez: 

Via ESPN Magazine

HE IS STANDING in a jewelry store that caters to the top sliver of the top one percent, wearing nearly $3 million in platinum and diamonds around his neck and wrist, surrounded by at least 20 of his associates, one of them hugging a Nike duffel that contains ziplock bags filled with forearm-thick knots of $100 bills and enough jewelry to satisfy the sartorial whims of its owner for an 11-city press tour. There are people outside on the New York City street with their faces smeared against the windows of the store, standing a few feet from a seven-deep black-Suburban-and-Escalade motorcade. There is a Gulfstream IV and a Gulfstream V gassed up and waiting for him and his entourage on the tarmac across the Hudson at Teterboro.

He has, in the past 20 minutes, spent close to a quarter of a million dollars on earrings and a necklace for his 13-year-old daughter, Iyanna, and he has sent some of his people out to buy so many chicken strips and fries that the place smells like a vat of burning oil, and at this moment he is haggling with the jewelers over a $3.5 million watch as a member of his security detail — the one summoned into action by the lyrical command “Jethro — sanitizer!” — is pouring so much Purell on his hands that it cascades through his fingers and creates a puddle on the white marble floor.

And it is here, at this moment, amid the self-inflicted chaos of his life, that Floyd Mayweather Jr. demands the attention of everyone in the room the people eating out of Styrofoam boxes, the jewelers chiding him for scheduling his next fight on Yom Kippur, the reporter and photographer and camera crew there to document moments just like this one. “Listen listen listen,” he says, the word like a bad case of hiccups. “Listenlistenlisten.” The room falls into an obedient quiet. He lifts his arms to his sides like a preacher giving thanks. “You know how much I’d like to have a normal day? One normal day? No pictures? No autographs? A normal day?”

There is a pause in the room. This is a man who wears his boxer shorts once before throwing them out. This is a man who wears his sneakers once before leaving them in hotel rooms for housekeepers who might have a relative in need of a size 7½, who keeps his head shaved yet travels on a private jet with his personal barber, who has two sets of nearly identical ultraluxury cars color-coded by mansion to help him remember — white in Las Vegas, black in Miami — where he is.

One normal day? The moment of silent disbelief ends with a few forced laughs emitted by those employed by the man and wishing to remain that way. The response is muted and brief — the room returns to its default mayhem setting almost immediately — because what Mayweather has just said, his stated desire to be normal for even one day, is perhaps the most outrageous statement this singularly outrageous man has ever made.

HE IS LYING on a couch in the G5 as it flies over New York City on its way to Washington, D.C., for the second stop in the press tour intended to ignite interest, and pay-per-view buys, for his Sept. 14 fight against Saul “Canelo” Alvarez. Somewhere behind the G5, in the G4, are his bodyguards, four massive humans who fly separately because Mayweather has an irrational fear of sharing a cabin with that much human bulk. His masseuse, Doralie, a beautiful woman with irradiated hair and 8-inch Valentino heels, is rubbing his feet and staring off into the distance in a three-hours-of-sleep kind of way. Floyd is holding court, talking about a hundred things at once, never stopping to gauge reaction or ask a question. “This is the way to live, baby,” he says. “Just relaxin’ in a G5.”

The Mayweather experience is an invitation to cede control of your life, to simply hand over everything — where you go, when you sleep, even what you eat — to Floyd Mayweather. If you’re accustomed to even the slightest measure of self-sufficiency, it’s a bit of an adjustment. By the end of the second day of my time on tour with him, I stop asking the one question that’s constantly on my mind: What are we waiting for? The answer, from any number of people, is either a shrug or a sleep-deprived “Floyd.” No explanation needed.

Mayweather is the modern embodiment of what Gay Talese, in describing Frank Sinatra, called “the fully emancipated male.” He can do whatever he wants whenever he wants with just about whomever he wants.

He is the last of boxing’s old-school, carny-barker showmen, the last of the third-person narcissists, the last of the great American prizefighters. He attracts and repels in equal measure. He is bigger than his sport, usually the highest-paid athlete in the world, and watching him preen his way from New York to Washington to Grand Rapids, Mich., to Chicago and back home to Las Vegas — cheered and jeered in equal measure — feels like the beginning of the end of an era. He is 44–0 and one fight into his six-fight, 30-month, potentially $300 million deal with Showtime. If he wins them all, he will be 38 and 49–0, the same record as Rocky Marciano, the mythical champion of champions. A 49–0 record without a contract would leave him free to negotiate an ungodly amount for a 50th fight. Through smart business, shrewd scheduling and the decline of Manny Pacquiao, Mayweather is boxing’s final megastar.

“Everyone wants the Floyd Mayweather payday; they want the same things Floyd Mayweather got,” he says. “But Floyd Mayweather, he earned it the hard way.”

The bout with Alvarez will be the richest gate in the sport’s history, and yet it highlights an inherent problem for Floyd and his profession. With contenders scarce, boxing’s resident firestorm is in danger of running out of fuel. For a run at 50–0 to be appreciated, his relationship with his opponents, starting with Alvarez, must become more symbiotic than adversarial. In other words, it works in Mayweather’s best interest for Alvarez to prove credible.

But right now, Floyd has more immediate concerns: He is cold. Mayweather’s preference for heat is famous among his crew; the gym in Vegas is always warmer inside than out, regardless of season. He asks the flight attendant to bump up the heat and says, “You can’t cook with cold grease, baby.”

“Everyone wants the Floyd Mayweather payday; they want the same things Floyd Mayweather got,” he says. “But Floyd Mayweather, he earned it the hard way.”

The bout with Alvarez will be the richest gate in the sport’s history, and yet it highlights an inherent problem for Floyd and his profession. With contenders scarce, boxing’s resident firestorm is in danger of running out of fuel. For a run at 50–0 to be appreciated, his relationship with his opponents, starting with Alvarez, must become more symbiotic than adversarial. In other words, it works in Mayweather’s best interest for Alvarez to prove credible.

But right now, Floyd has more immediate concerns: He is cold. Mayweather’s preference for heat is famous among his crew; the gym in Vegas is always warmer inside than out, regardless of season. He asks the flight attendant to bump up the heat and says, “You can’t cook with cold grease, baby.”

For the rest of the article:  http://espn.go.com/boxing/story/_/id/9630673/floyd-mayweather-last-great-prizefighter-espn-magazine

Advertisements

About SPORTS MEDIA WORLD

Sports Created Content, Media & PR www.SPORTSMEDIAWORLD.COM, Follow Us On: Twitter: @SPORTSMEDIAWRLD & Instagram: @SPORTSMEDIAWORLD

Posted on September 24, 2013, in Boxing and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Floyd Money Mayweather Now (45-0) Is By Far The Biggest $how In Boxing.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: